Designed by Daniel Burnham and opened in 1907, Washington Union Station instantly became one of the pre-eminent passenger rail facilities in the world.
Burhnam Place, named after Union Station’s original architect Daniel Burnham, is part of Amtrak’s master plan and will be developed by Akridge and architectural firm Shalom Baranes. Developers plan, over the next 15 years, to build a 3-million square-foot mixed use development over the train tracks.
The Washington Union Station Master Plan (Master Plan) creates a framework for capital investment that will provide numerous local, regional, and national benefits. The plan is practical, with phased construction that can be accomplished incrementally.
The plan will improve the primary functions of the station, focusing on the core needs and customer experience of a multimodal transportation center, by increasing:
to triple the passengers in the station and double the train service, moving towards more sustainable transportation.
to improve the passenger and visitor experience as commuters and travelers move swiftly and efficiently across all modes of transportation.
in the surrounding area by providing transportation and economic growth to support Washington as a nexus of cultural, political, and business opportunity in the region and nation.
The Master Plan connects a modernized rail infrastructure with the city – infrastructure necessary to move millions of passengers a year through Union Station to jobs, homes, schools, cultural facilities and tourist destinations.
However, realizing the station’s potential for growth must be accomplished within the existing station footprint, preserve the iconic existing Union Station, limit negative impacts on surrounding neighborhoods, and respect the historic legacy of Daniel Burnham’s original station design and Washington’s city plan.
Amtrak released its $7.5 billion Master Plan for Washington Union Station, which would transform the station area into a multimodal transportation hub and a major commercial, retail and residential center for the entire Washington, D.C., metropolitan area.
The plan envisions 500 hotel rooms, 100,000 square feet of retail, and 1,300 residential units built on a concrete platform over the tracks and supported columns placed throughout the rail yard.
Developers emphasize that the project will feature elements that enhance public space and amenities. One such feature includes a 1.5 mile elevated greenway with a bike lane along the west side of the station that will link the NoMa neighborhoods with Union Station and the Metro and connect to the Metropolitan Branch Trail.
Plans also call for a “grand plaza” fronting both sides of H Street that will lead into a brand new Train Hall in what developers say will be “a grand northern entrance to Union Station.”
Article by Marco Rinaldi